The Ontario Forage Masters Self Assessment is a document promoting excellence in the growing, harvesting and storage of forages.
Please feel free to download a PDF copy of the document for your personal use:
In fields across Ontario and around the world, a near-miraculous transformation – photosynthesis – occurs every day. Plant leaves swivel towards the sun, harvesting light to produce sugars and starches, forming the basis of the food, fibre and fuel we all rely on. Farmers, especially forage producers, are privileged to have a ringside seat on this process. They steward this ongoing transformation, and reap the bounty that flows from it.
Across Canada, almost 40 percent of the country’s farmland grows forages, making it the largest acreage devoted to any single crop.
The Forage Masters competition is designed to enhance that stewardship and boost that bounty. Whether harvested as hay, ensilage, or pasture, perennial forages are a key building block for Ontario agriculture. Boosting the success of Ontario’s forage producers not only maintains this basic sector and the industries that rely on it, but helps build the soil, improve water quality, store carbon, and provides green space and wildlife habitat.
This initiative, produced by the Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association with the help of specialists from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and with contributions from experts in the private sector, shines the spotlight on forages. It offers a checklist of basic best practices, and a scorecard for hay and ensiled forages. The goal is to improve forage management, help farmers grow and harvest more productive crops, and make the most of their nutrients through effective storage and feeding. The result is a stronger forage sector -- a stronger backbone for Ontario agriculture, and a farm landscape that is more prosperous, and sustainable.
For more information, contact Andrew Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-826-4216.